Blogs

Creating Professional Identity

By | Comments (0)
Creating Professional Identity

There appears to be a correlation between the age of a profession and its adoption of a pro bono ethic. The medical and legal professions are two of the oldest professions in this country. We look at them now and we assume that they have always had a strong sense of identity and a code of conduct. The reality is that both started as very informal professions that took...

The Ultimate Pro Bono Project

By | Comments (0)
The Ultimate Pro Bono Project

I just read the Deloitte Community Involvement annual report that included a description of their amazing work for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 2004 in the wake of the tsunami. The UNDP was apparently overwhelmed in its efforts to disburse aid and ensure assistance reached those in need after the tsunami in Indonesia. Their systems simply couldn't handle the outpouring of support from around the globe. Deloitte provided 60 consultants across six member...

What is your resolution for 2008?

By | Comments (0)
What is your resolution for 2008?

Last year I gave up on the lose weight resolution and decided instead to make it a resolution to simply wear more black--it is slimming. It has enabled me to do more shopping, work out less and eat anything I want. It has really worked out well for me (at least until I die of a heart attack at 49 like my mother did).

The other common resolution...

Re: Pro Bono Financial Management

By | Comments (0)

Where do you think the nonprofit sector could effectively use financial management resources?

Some thoughts:

To start with, for volunteers from the corporate finance world to be useful to nonprofits, they need to understand how nonprofit finance works. Taproot could provide a primer: nonprofit accounting, grant process, reports, etc. This way the volunteer starts with some of the tools to speak their language. Ability to "measure/quantify results" is one of the biggest gaps for nonprofits...

Stakeholder Engagement

By | Comments (0)
Stakeholder Engagement

We did a a focus group yesterday with 10 nonprofit executive directors to understand their strategic planning challenges and explore how pro bono could be used to support the process. What an impressive group. Collectively, I think they had been involved in at least 50 strategic planning projects, and they brought a real depth of understanding and pragmatism to the process.

What emerged as a core theme was the importance...

Social Loafing

By | Comments (0)
Social Loafing

As an undergrad at the University of Michigan, I took a great course in organizational behavior that focused on team building and team performance. It had a significant impact on the design of our pro bono program.

It was in that class that I was introduced to the concept of "social loafing." The idea is that on many teams there are members who don't carry their weight, which builds resentment...

The Turnip - An American Symbol of Freedom

By | Comments (0)

While perhaps not as well known as his northern counterpart Johnny Appleseed, Terrence Turnip is considered a greater American icon by many in the South. Born a slave in Arkansas in 1793, Terrence Deacon ran away from his plantation at the age of 17 with only a bag of turnip seeds.

For five years he evaded capture, making his way up and down the Mississippi River. At every stop on his route, he planted acres...

Pro Bono Financial Management

By | Comments (0)

We consistently get requests from foundations to figure out how to engage business professionals in financial management work for nonprofits. They clearly see a need, but I am struggling to figure out how to make it work in a reliable and scalable way.

Nonprofit accounting is pretty different from corporate accounting. It is more than just the fact that "P&L" and "Balance Sheet" are not terms used by nonprofits. The whole process of placing and...

Missing the Point - POL Impact Calculator

By | Comments (0)
Missing the Point - POL Impact Calculator

The Points of Light Foundation created a calculator on their site that estimates the value of skills-based volunteering to a nonprofit organization. As they state on the site, "a volunteer performing a professional task such as accounting is worth more in the market place than that same volunteer doing gardening." True indeed.

While it is great that POL has made the point to differentiate the value of...

sappi | ideas that matter

By | Comments (0)

In 1999, sappi, a global printing and paper powerhouse based in South Africa, launched a program called "ideas that matter." Every year they donate money as well as in kind printing and paper to a graphic design or design firm to take on a project for the public good. They have supported over 200 projects with over $6 million.

If you have a breakthrough design idea that would make a meaningful social impact, you should...

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - blogs